WILMINGTON, Delaware, Aug. 9, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- I am deeply disappointed in the recent decision of Romania's High Court of Cassation and Justice to affirm the criminal conviction of Romanian businessman, Gabriel Popoviciu, and sentence him to seven years in prison. This sentence and conviction are not supported by either the facts or the law.
In July 2016, I was retained to conduct an independent review of Mr. Popoviciu's conviction before the Romanian Court of Appeals. I conducted that review with the assistance of a team of experienced former federal prosecutors and former FBI Special Agents, one of whom speaks Romanian fluently.
Our team thoroughly reviewed the evidence presented against Mr. Popoviciu at trial, including documentary evidence and surreptitious tape-recordings of his conversations. That review documented numerous factual and legal deficiencies in the case against Mr. Popoviciu. For example, the prosecution's main witness, who repeatedly but unsuccessfully attempted to make Mr. Popoviciu incriminate himself using secret recordings, admitted in court that he was not bribed by Mr. Popoviciu -- with the alleged bribe including two bottles of liquor and corporate promotional materials (such as a pen, notebook, and calendars). The former Minister of Education, as well as other witnesses, testified that the Baneasa land parcel was never a publicly owned asset and therefore cannot support the legal charge of abuse of position. Many other serious factual and legal deficiencies, inconsistent with fundamental principles of the rule of law, were also highlighted in my report.
I am hopeful that courts and reviewing authorities will review this case and decide that justice and the rule of law demand another result.
Note to Editors
Louis J. Freeh served as an Assistant United States Attorney (Southern District of New York), United States District Judge (Southern District of New York), and as the fifth Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He is the Senior Managing Partner of Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP and the Chairman of Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC.
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